Instant Pot Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta is a tasty, cheesy one-pot meal. This easy pasta recipe has a ton of flavor, and is fast to make. If your bacon is cooked, it is a dump and start recipe. Pressure cooker chicken bacon ranch pasta is filling and yummy!
Originally published 1/5/18, Recipe has been updated
Instant Pot Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta
So you like bacon, I mean, of course you do, and you want to make something tasty with it. How about Instant Pot Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta! This recipe has lots of flavor, and is very hearty. Best of all, it has bacon in it!
Well, I was going to say it's a one-pot meal, but bacon is better!
I wanted to bring you something a little more hearty. This is like a loaded mac and cheese, with chicken, bacon, and lots of flavor!
There's always room for more pasta, and if it's easy to make, and loaded with great flavor, there's a better chance of the family liking it!
Why cook a pasta dish in the Instant Pot?
I love to cook pasta in my Instant Pot. To me, not having to drain the water, and the pasta soaking up the flavor, are the two big reasons to cook pasta in the pressure cooker!
Plus this is a one-pot meal and it is done in about 30 minutes!
Which pasta works the best in this recipe?
I like to use penne, rotini, or ziti. You can use just about any pasta, as the chicken will cook in a short amount of time, so use what you have!
The ratio of pasta to liquid is important, so make sure you are using 16 oz for this recipe. You can't go by the cup as different pastas have different shapes/sizes.
Using a nice thick-cut smoky bacon makes this recipe even better. If you don't have that kind, any bacon you have will do.
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Instant Pot Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta has great flavor, and is a hearty pasta meal. A casserole style dish in less time than baking in the oven.
- 6 slices Thick Cut Bacon, cooked or uncooked, cut in bite-sized pieces
- 3 Tbsp Butter, unsalted
- 4 cups Chicken Broth, low sodium
- ½ cup Heavy Cream or Half and Half, (more if you like it saucier)
- 1 packet Ranch Dressing Powder (3 Tbsp)
- ½ tsp Garlic Powder
- 16 oz Penne Pasta (or rotini, ziti, etc.)
- 2 (8 oz) Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast (cubed slightly larger than bite sized)
- 8 oz Cream Cheese, cubed
- 1 cup Sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded (optional)
Prepare all of the ingredients before you start. Cut the bacon and chicken, have the butter measured. Shred the cheese, and measure out the ranch & garlic powders, broth, and pasta. It will make the cooking process much easier and faster. Less stress!
If you have uncooked bacon: Turn on the Sauté function (Normal/Med heat). Add the chopped bacon. Cook, stirring occasionally, until done. Remove to a paper towel and drain all of the fat from the pot. Set aside.
Add the butter and a splash or two of the broth to the pot and stir, scraping the bottom of the pot so you can to get up all of the brown bits (fond).
Add the broth, heavy cream, ranch powder, and garlic powder, and stir well.
Add the pasta and stir.
Add the chicken and the cubes of cream cheese. Don't stir, but gently push down, using a spoon, to submerge the chicken and pasta.
Cancel the Sauté function.
Place the pressure cooker lid on the pot and turn the steam release knob to the Sealing position.
Press Pressure Cook or Manual button, and then the + or - button to choose 5 minutes. Your pasta may need a different time. Usually half the time on the package directions.
When the cooking cycle ends, do a controlled Quick Release of the pressure, just until you are sure no sauce will spew out with the steam, then turn the knob all the way and let it all out.
When the pin in the lid drops down, open it and give the contents a stir. It will be fairly soupy at this point.
Stir in the cheese and let it melt.
Stir in the bacon. Mix well. It will thicken as it cools.
This pasta dish will thicken as it cools. To reheat you may need to add a little broth, milk, or water.
RESOURCES TO MAKE Instant Pot Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta Recipe and More
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This will be the second time I have made this delicious dinner! The first time, it disappeared. Made a double batch this time and realized at the end we were out of shredded cheddar. I used Muenster slices torn up and out smells fantabulous! I can't wait to taste it! Thank you for this recipe, it was an instant hit!
Hi Sandy. This may seem like a silly question. Do you mean two 8-oz chicken breasts, or two chicken breasts that equal 8 oz total? I know I'm probably overthinking this. I just wanted to check. Thanks.
2 -8 oz breasts
This was easy and so delicious! The instructions were perfect. Thanks so much for the great recipe.
This was so delicious! I made it tonight and it came out perfect. It's definitely a keeper recipe.
Is the chicken in this recipe pre-cooked? Sounds yummy and want to make it but 5 minutes in insta pot doesn't seem like enough to cook the chicken
It is not precooked. 5 minutes is plenty because the chicken is cut into small pieces.
I made this for dinner tonight it was so yummy! I cheated and used precooked bacon. My six year old who never eats anything I make tie dinner, ate 2 helpings of this. My husband also said put this on the regular meal plan. Thanks for another great recipe, my family's bellies are happy and full
Hi, thank you for sharing this recipe. I have made it a few times and a few different ways.
Fresh jalapeños adds a good spice to it.
When your family says MORE spice, use pepper jack cheese.
Such a good recipe that can be done quickly and also be changed on the fly.
Wow! This was delicious! I even forgot to add the bacon at the end. Only change I made, I added about 1!4 cup tomato paste (from a tube) to add just a bit of attitude. We’ll be making this often, thank you!